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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
How loud/quiet is your car?

Prior to starting down this road did you take measurement on your vehicle? Some of you do have extremely loud systems yet at the same time have done a ton of sheet metal work to quiet the noise.

Decided to take a baseline calibration of my suv at idle and at 75 mph. Surprised really.
Using this app:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=kr.sira.sound

Model: 2009 Lexus RX350
Idle: 40 db
@75 mph: 75 db +-3

What surprised me was getting into my friend 2008 Ford F250 diesel his at idle was 45 db. Used the same app and were parked next to each other in front of his house. All is quiet out here right now. There's NOT a lot of difference in his idle & mine. Negligible really.

What's your reading? It would be nice to see what other members cars are.
Found this site. Not sure of testing method or accuracy but cool they have a database.
Auto Decibel Database
 

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I've never measured a car to see how noisy the car itself was before. Although I have some doubt about the accuracy of a phone app to measure this. Only measuring I do for how loud a car is, is using an SPL meter. I normally would use my TermLab meter for this but this is strictly for SPL.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hopefully we can attract more participants. For those of you not sure of the accuracy of phone apps here is a detailed analysis....
CDC - NIOSH Science Blog – So How Accurate Are These Smartphone Sound Measurement Apps?
A good read.
Bottom line phone apps for the most part can be accurate to +-2 db. Granted a phone from Samsung vs Apple(which according to the article eliminated the high pass filter in their mics for better audio quality) will be different. Hard to believe so little interest in sound of our vehicle surroundings. At the very least this is a useful tool to help us add the the checklist on our next vehicle buy. Not make or break but it'll let you know what car to avoid.
 

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I'll get to this sometime this week just for fun. Out or curiosity, what was your exact test method?

Obviously road tests won't be comparable since different roads are better and worse, but idle tests alone should show something.

Keep in mind the biggest source of noise at 75mph is noise cause by aerodynamics or the lack of.
 

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I just downloaded this app a few days ago for the same reason. I wanted to check how the car was before and after deadener.

Different devices can have vastly different readings though, scroll through their pictures on their google play page. There is pic of a db meter next to a bunch of devices all with different readings.

It would be good to compare with yourself for changes in your car though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'll get to this sometime this week just for fun. Out or curiosity, what was your exact test method?

Obviously road tests won't be comparable since different roads are better and worse, but idle tests alone should show something.

Keep in mind the biggest source of noise at 75mph is noise cause by aerodynamics or the lack of.
Thanks! My test method wasn't to scientific. On the idle it was late night on a residential street outside my friends house and all was dead quiet. Having just cruised over to his house with both our cars warmed up I took an informal reading. I did this outside for a reason just so I could eliminate acoustic echo from the garage. It was approximately 55 outside. So yes I do understand there are WAY to many variables to take I to consideration for each persons car. Tires, road conditions, headwinds, temperature etc. But as a general guide it's useful nonetheless even as I understand it its really for your own knowledge to your vehicle. Gives you a start anyway. Being over on the Lexus forum it's well known about the soft "ticking" of the injectors and not a damn thing you can do about that. So we debate this vehicle sound vs that at this price point etc. Usual banter.
 

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OK…I'm game. Downloaded the app. I'll do idle measurements of my 2005 Ram diesel tomorrow, but 75 mph is going to take me some time cuz all I have is Highway 1 around here (read curvy, hilly and 65 mph MAX safe except in rare instances.)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OK…I'm game. Downloaded the app. I'll do idle measurements of my 2005 Ram diesel tomorrow, but 75 mph is going to take me some time cuz all I have is Highway 1 around here (read curvy, hilly and 65 mph MAX safe except in rare instances.)
Safety first! If all you can do is 55 mph then let it be that. Just note it so someone else who may have same truck as you can see your informal findings:)
 

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Still one of those cheap easy things to do that could lead to improvements. I would expect most cars to idle close in amplitude these days, it's really high speed that they differ.

I'll test our 2014 Kia Optima and my mom's 05 Kia Spectra.
 

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Safety first! If all you can do is 55 mph then let it be that. Just note it so someone else who may have same truck as you can see your informal findings:)
No doubt…otherwise the dB meter will be eerily silent and then redlined as I fly off the cliff and land in the Pacific. NOT lol.
 

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Don't have a new enough car to feel like I'd be actually contributing to this thread. I'm driving a 99' Cavalier and at the moment, it hasn't much of an interior (no carpet, passenger seats, rear deck cover, rear quarter panels,etc etc) so it'd not be the least bit informative anyways. And after I put the interior back in, it will have extra deadening added, which would not allow for proper results for a comparison between cars.

Still, I could participate, but I haven't a smart phone for the app. I do have a 4th Gen iPod Touch, which I've downloaded SPL meters on it before, but they all differ measuring the same thing. I also have a Radio Shack SPL meter, which may be more accurate.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
No doubt…otherwise the dB meter will be eerily silent and then redlined as I fly off the cliff and land in the Pacific. NOT lol.
Lol! Say.....while your there could you take a reading of the ocean? :laugh: Cuss me out for the stupid idea AFTER the reading....be safe. Lol
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Still one of those cheap easy things to do that could lead to improvements. I would expect most cars to idle close in amplitude these days, it's really high speed that they differ.

I'll test our 2014 Kia Optima and my mom's 05 Kia Spectra.
We rented one on our Disneyland vacation trip and were impressed at how well it behaved and performed. I walked away from that thinking if that's the direction their headed then they'll do well for themselves.

Absolutely this really is for our own curiosity and a smidgen to the diy community to let them know how a stock vehicle or a heavily modified sound deadend one will be like. I suspect if this thread has legs we'll see someone at idle as low as a Tesla. I imagine a Honda CRX quadruple layered and hitting a low 30 db at idle. How cool would that be! Maybe even a Ford F250:) Who knows.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
at 75MpH most noise come from tires, not engine/exhaust.
Preach on brother. I HATE my tires. This was brought up in the Lexus forum and I agree. On my IS 350 were the original run flats and they sucked BIG time. Threw on some Continental control and the ride dropped to 68-70db from 78 db. So a noticeable improvement.
 

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at 75MpH most noise come from tires, not engine/exhaust.
Wind noise is equal or more important than tire noise at 75. According to GM, 75% of their wind tunnel usage now days is for reducing NVH.

Case in point, my significantly aeromodded neon was far quieter than it was without the aeromods, as evidenced by pulling all the mods off when I sold the car. Next time I do something like that, I'll get measurements.
 

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Wind noise is equal or more important than tire noise at 75. According to GM, 75% of their wind tunnel usage now days is for reducing NVH.

Case in point, my significantly aeromodded neon was far quieter than it was without the aeromods, as evidenced by pulling all the mods off when I sold the car. Next time I do something like that, I'll get measurements.
Well I get to do something about BOTH wind noise from the overhead rack on my truck, as wells the singing from the commercial 19.5" Goodyear ties. I am hoping the MIchelins that I eventually replace them with will be quieter, but I actually have a plan to use Cascade VB3 (the lead/foam sandwich) on top of all of the wheel well liners. Overhead, I will use 3m acoustic thinsulate, as well as CLD underneath the headliner.
 
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